Saturday, October 24, 2015

Little Tree Orchard

Last weekend we decided it was time to go find our pumpkins. There are so many farms around here that we didn't know which one to go to. After going to Hollenbeck Cider Mill a few weeks ago, our friends tried out Little Tree Orchard (still in search for that perfect Apple Cider Donut). They told us that it was the perfect apple experience. We decided to try it out, and hoped that they would have a pumpkin patch as well.

 B's serious face. She is much less smiley these days. (Which means she still smiles a ton, just not EVERY time you look at her). She's taking life more seriously now that she can get around and get into things. She'd much rather be on the ground exploring than in daddy's arms.

There was no pumpkin patch, but we still fully enjoyed the apple environment. They had this cute little cabin where they sold cider and donuts. There was a MASSIVE orchard with over SIXTY(!) different kinds of apples. 

There was a little nook in the cabin with toys, foosball, ping-pong, and an amazing view. We hung out there for awhile enjoying our donuts and cider before we got back in line to get more donuts and let Shae play some more (and we wonder why we struggle losing weight...). 

We have been so obsessed with apples lately. How could we not be living here? Yesterday we had apples with every meal. Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal for breakfast, apples with sandwiches for lunch, and apples in our Butternut Squash Soup for dinner. They are just THAT good (and cheap and convenient--but seriously, they just smell so good). 

And just so I don't lose the recipe...(notes and recipe from Jenessa)

Butternut Squash Soup
1 butternut squash
1 chopped onion
1 chopped carrot
1-2 apples chopped or some apple juice to taste (I use apples)
3-6 cups chicken broth/water and bouillon (depending on how thick you want it)
4 tbsp butter or olive oil
1/2 tsp thyme
1/4 tsp pepper
1/2 marjoram (I didn't have this, I put a little cloves in it this time instead)
1 tsp tarragon
1/8 tsp cayenne
1 or 2 packages cream cheese (I use 1 usually but put 1 1/2 in last night because it was a special occasion ðŸ˜‹)
Aaaaaand brown sugar to taste

Chop the squash into four big pieces and seed the squash, rub the exposed no skinned part with olive oil and roast at 400 deg until soft (30 min?). (Alternatively you could just skin and chop it up to cook with everything else but I truly dislike chopping squashes so I always do this.)

Sauté onion in oil/butter. Add in the carrots and spices and sauté until it seems soft (this is also where you'd add the squash if you chopped it... Full disclosure I don't think I ever have enough patience to sauté it, I just plan on it getting soft while boiling so I don't see the point). Add the broth and apples and roasted squash and a couple tbsps brown sugar if you are into that and cook until it's all soft and squishy. Take off of heat. Blend it to death. Add cream cheese and blend again. Add brown sugar to taste.

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